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  • Writer's pictureRichard Parrish

E Is Not Enough

One day, I had an early appointment at the office. Where I live, traffic congestion is extremely heavy from 6 in the morning until around 9. Already running a little late, I noticed my fuel gauge. I muttered: “‘E’ does not mean enough, Richard!”

I was annoyed at myself for neglecting to fill my car with gas the day before. I knew I had an early morning meeting and was angry with myself. I should have, I could have, and if only I would have!

But a nearly empty gas tank and pressing appointments are not the only anxieties we face. Many things in life intensify stress and deplete our reserves.

“Four dollars a gallon is ridiculous,” I said to myself (and probably to others close enough to hear my frustration) as I filled my car with fuel. When will this stop? I thought.

How long? How long will inflation, racial tensions, dissidence, relational strife—and you name the issues—continue? Which of these encourage anxiety in your life?

All of these thoughts were racing through my head as I was filling my tank with gas.

Out of nowhere, the apostle Paul’s words shouted to me: “Do not be anxious about anything!” (Philippians 4:6a).

Still annoyed, I thought, Paul didn’t have to fill his tank with gas! Then I heard a quiet: “Yes, but you have never come close to facing the hardships Paul faced.” WOW! Such a soft—and timely—reprimand.

Paul had learned something I’m continuing to learn:

“…in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6b-7).

As I filled my car with gas, God filled my tank with a timely reminder:

Don’t worry! Offer everything to God in prayer. Be thankful. Let God know your concerns, as your empty tank is replenished with peace, and your heart and mind are protected.

Is it time to refill your tank? “E” is not enough, but God is.

-Richard Parrish



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